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Deleuze, Altered States and Film$
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Anna Powell

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780748632824

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748632824.001.0001

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(p.54) Chapter 2 Pharmacoanalysis
Deleuze, Altered States and Film

Anna Powell

Edinburgh University Press

This chapter analyses the popularisation of altered consciousness in drugs-oriented films. It provides a critical analysis of several relevant films including Kenneth Anger's 1954 Inauguration of the Pleasure Dome, Dennis Hopper's 1968 Easy Rider and Darren Aronofsky's 2001 Requiem for a Dream. The chapter investigates how far each film impacts on us as an affective agent of becoming and alters consciousness. It discusses how particular stylistic techniques, such as abstraction and anamorphosis, might induce virtual narcosis by cinematic hallucination, and explains that this process is elucidated through Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari's concept of molecularity. The chapter contends that cinema offers an aesthetic parallel in its capacity to expand mundane modes of perception and thought.

Keywords:   altered consciousness, drugs-oriented films, Pleasure Dome, Easy Rider, Requiem for Dream, affective agent, virtual narcosis, cinematic hallucination, Gilles Deleuze, Félix Guattari

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